We Want You to Foster!

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

URGENT: We need foster homes - please pass the word...

Other than the death of one of our rescued cats due to serious untreatable illnesses, the most gut wrenching thing about rescue is not being able to help others when they need help. We get requests to take in cats, a lot of them foreclosure kitties or kittens from feral colonies. However, without more foster homes, we can't take in any more cats.

We provide the medical care and adoption screening for all cats in the foster program. Foster homes provide food and litter and love and attention. Although as long as we have enough food and litter donated, we will provide the food and litter for the foster cats.

Please consider opening up your heart and becoming a foster home. So many cats need you.

Afraid of long-term commitment, then fostering is for you! If you're interested in fostering, please email us at

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Adult Cats Rock!!!

Sure, kittens are great but adult cats (and even older kittens, aka "juveniles") totally rock! We have some wonderful adult cats and older kittens for adoption - check out our website at Some of the reasons adopting an older cat instead of a kitten:

  • A kitten is only a kitten for a short period of time.

  • People think that they can get a kitten and “train” it to fit a particular mental picture. Each cat, even kitten, has a unique personality. When adopting an adult cat, you already know the cat’s personality.

  • Older cats don’t climb your curtains, run the Indy 500 in the middle of the night, and know not to use your leg as a scratching post.

  • Kittens require constant supervision - adults don’t.

  • Older cats have a well-developed immune system and stronger stomach tolerance with fewer digestive upsets than kittens.

  • Adult cats are more affectionate. The older they get, the more lap time they generally want.

  • Older cats adjust better to new surroundings - been there, done that!

  • Adult cats adjust to the other cat or dog you already have (plus you already know if they get along well with other animals).

  • Adult cats are already litter box-trained - no surprises! Plus kittens love to play "poop soccer"!

  • And the #1 reason to adopt an adult cat...Most people want kittens.

Many adult cats end up in shelters due to no fault of their own. Separated from their loved ones, surrounded by other cats, confined, confused, and sometimes frightened, many are emotionally devastated by their misfortune. Sadly, most people gravitate toward the cute, bouncy, big-eyed kittens. Older cats sit by and watch, as one loving family after another passes them over for a cute kitten. Adopting an adult cat is a way to say to a deserving animal "I believe in you."

Kittens will always be popular, and most have no trouble attracting admirers. But for the abandoned, forgotten, and heartbroken adult cats, you just might be their last chance to have the love and warmth of a home where they can live out their years in comfort. When properly cared for, they will typically remain active and even playful throughout most of their lives.

Bridgey, pictured at the left, is a wonderful dark gray tabby and is a very low-maintenance cat. Bridgey is approximately 3-4 years old. She is low-maintenance, laid back, quiet, and easy cat to have around. She's not a lap cat, she does like love and attention but usually in smaller doses. Bridgey loves sitting anywhere up high or gazing out the window. She would be a great first cat or cat for a small space as she has tidy litterbox habits, uses her scratching post, and has a moderate activity level. Bridgey enjoys human company, but not necessarily the company of other cats.

Vera, pictured at the right, might look like a mini linebacker in this photo, but she's such a loving cat. Vera is the ultimate lap cat and true lap cats are sometimes hard to find. If you're lonely and want company, then Vera is the cat for you. She loves sitting on your lap or snuggling next to you while you read or watch television. And she totally loves snuggling next to you while you sleep. Vera loves to talk and ask you about your day and then tell you about hers. Vera is almost a dog in cat's "clothing". She will come running when you call her and when it's bed time, she'll beat you to the bed!

Information about DeMartino, Dulcinia, Whitaker, and Wilhemenia can be found on our website. They are all about 7.5-8 months old and wonderful. The boys are total lovebugs. The girls are a bit shy but doing much better. They would all love their furever homes soon.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Black, one of the Oakville boys

Yes, it's yet another post about the Oakville kittens, but this picture was just too cute not to share! Black is one of the kittens that is adopted but doesn't go to his new home until January 15th. Black and Blue are "named" because of the color of their collars. The family that adopted them will name them when they take them home.

"Black" appears to be the runt of the litter as he's smaller than the others, but he had no problem getting on top of the bureau in the foyer to look adorable next to a small desk lamp.

We'll be featuring some of our other kittens as soon as they get over their little kitty colds. And we'll feature some of our adults real soon.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Christmas kittens...

Four of the Oakville Five boys found their new homes in time for the new year. Two of the boys went home yesterday, while the other two that were adopted will stay with us until their adoptive family gets back from Canada in mid-January.

As a general rule, we don't adopt out cats and kittens as Christmas presents. But all three families were screened carefully (as with all our adoptions), and the families were involved in the adoption decision. Three fantastic homes for five fantastic kittens and that makes us really happy.

Kiz (pictured here), the last kitten from the Oakville Five, is still in search of his purrfect home. This adorable boy has purrsonality galore. He is super cute, loves to purr, loves to play, loves to cuddle, and is absolutely a wonderful kitten.

The Oakville kittens and I thank Marie (AC&A board member) very much for her wonderful work on the Oakville adoptions. She helped make several adults, six children, and four kittens very happy.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Beej (BJ) went to his new home today...

BJ was adopted today ...just in time to fulfill his wish of having a forever home for the holidays.

BJ was adopted by a great family that understands he is a great older kitten but is little shy and may take up to a few months to fully blossom in his new home.

We sure wish more people understood that with a little patience some of the timid and scared cats can become some of the biggest lovey cats -- they just need time and lots of love.

Happy Holidays everyone from the volunteers and cats of Alley Cats and Angels.

Monday, December 22, 2008

The Oakville Boys

The Oakville boys were all neutered, rabies vaccinated, and microchipped today. And we have some potential adopters coming to meet the cats Christmas morning. Wouldn't that be a wonderful holiday present for the kittens - to go from being abanded to their forever home in time for the new year?

Friday, December 19, 2008

What are the odds?

All five of the Oakville kittens are boys! I don't know what the odds are but in all my years of rescue, I've never had a litter were they were all the same sex.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The joys and sorrows of rescue

This has been a great rescue year, but also a very sorrow filled year. Over 135 cats have come through the rescue so far this year. Many of those were TNR (trap/neuter/return) ferals so were only around for a few days each, many were ferals that were in danger and needed to be relocated to barn homes, and there were many others that were adoptables. And a few that may be long-term residents of the adoption program ("lifers") because so many people want the perfect cat. The one that runs to you and sits on your lap from minute one; unfortunately those people miss out on some of the most wonderful cats because some of those very special cats are the ones that will take a little longer than typical to acclimate to their new environment and come out of their shell. But when they do, they will give those humans so much love.

This year has also been full of tears as we've lost four cats this year. Over the course of this year, four cats had to be put to sleep because of health issues that were untreatable or so severe the cats had no quality of life. The first cat we lost this year was Cammie, sibling or other relative to Butterscotch featured in the last post. Cammie was 6 months old and still looked like she was 2 months old. She saw several doctors and had multiple tests done and the prognosis was not good and it was unfair to her to let her continue to suffer.

Next was Harry, Harry Winston - my diamond in the rough. Harry was feral but was so badly injured that his legs were completely bandaged and he allowed me to feed him and clean his wounds. He would not have gone back to his colony, he would have stayed with me but he passed away one evening on our way to the vet.

Third was Orange Fluff. A feral that needed a barn home but then became sick. She had glaucoma secondary to some unknown disease. But this was horrific, I've never seen anything quite so bad. She allowed me to give her oral meds twice daily without problem. That should have been a sign that she was seriously ill. I mean she was feral - very feral, but she allowed me to give her oral medication and put ointment in her eyes with no problem? She got worse and it was time to let her go. She was suffering and not letting her go is not rescue - it would have been cruelty. She wasn't with me long, but she still took a piece of my heart when she left.

The last cat was Layla. Oh my gosh, Layla. She captured my heart as they all do, but she took an extra little piece. Layla was a big girl. She was white with blue eyes (but not deaf) and had 8 toes on each front foot and toes on each back foot and several of the toes had double claws (26 toes but 30 claws total). She liked to be held like a baby and her tummy rubbed (all 20 pounds of her) and she could snuggle like nobody's business at bedtime. Layla was diagnosed with a rare nasal cancer - nasal oncocytoma - and chemo was not an option for this cancer. It was so bad when it was diagnosed that the tumor had grown up to behind her eye also. We treated Layla with pain meds and anti-inflammatories for a while but then she told me it was time. She was in pain and she needed me to let her go. It's like she gave me permission to have her put to sleep. It was so hard and it still is everything I think about her.
Several lives lost that might have been saved if they were rescued sooner. When I "lose" a cat, I sometimes feel as if I can't do this anymore. I can't continue because my heart is broken each time one crosses the rainbow bridge. Sometimes it's too much even with all the ones we've saved, the ones we lose devastate me.

But it is worth it. Because even if they were only with us a short time, we not only gave them food and medical care and a safe place to lay their head, but we gave them love and smiles and petting and brushing and human kindness - something a few of them had never known. That doesn't make it any easier but it makes me realize that I have to rescue - it's who I am.

I love them all. But this rescue year is dedicated to my Layla, my big beautiful girl.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Seasons Greetings from a "Graduate" of Alley Cats and Angels

It's always nice to hear from "graduates" of Alley Cats and Angels. Meet Butterscotch. He was rescued from a feral colony with several other older kittens and was old enough (little over 4 months old when rescued) that he typically would have been TNR'd (trap/neuter/return) except the shopping center and restaurants where he lived where scheduled to be torn down. So Butterscotch and the others stayed with us because they did socialize well and become adoptable (if they were deemed unadoptable, we would have found a nice barn home for them - where they would have still been cared for, but hugs and kitty kisses wouldn't have been expected).
A wonderful lady and her two sons came by to meet the cats in hopes of adopting one or two and then came by every weekend until they were able to take the cats home. It was clear right away that they wanted Butterscotch but I thought they would also adopt Carrots. But Cinnamon (not pictured, she's a bit camera shy) picked them by walking over and curling up on one of the boy's lap. It was a perfect match. It's hard to believe that it's been almost a year since they were adopted by they are doing great. How could they not be - they were adopted by a great family that understood sometimes cats need a while to adjust and that shy cats will usually come out of their shell once they are in their forever home and adjust. Thank you to the H's for adopting these babies and taking such good care of them.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Bath time...

...can be such hard work and result in a few scratches here and there. But when you get a picture like this -- it's worth it! Meet Puddin', a very small long-haired black kitten (with one white toe). I felt almost cruel as I laughed at him and made him pose for pictures. Now, he is truly one of the sweetest and cutest kittens we have, but if looks could kill.... See that face?! I'll have to get another picture of him when he's dry so everyone can see how cute he is. Puddin' was seventh in a line of ten cats that were bathed tonight. Gosh, we're tired!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

The Oakville Kittens

Meet the "Oakville Five". These kittens were dumped at Oakville near Warrenton, NC. They were dumped near a very busy intersection and would have surely been hit by a car soon. The rescue's adoption program is technically full unless we get more foster homes (and money), but there was no way I could leave these sweet babies.

They are about 10 weeks old and very sweet. No names yet as they really are almost identical.

You may notice the rather "interesting" cage decor at the bottom of the cage. Well, yesterday the monkies staged the "great escape". The kittens are small enough that they were able to squeeze through the bottom rungs of the cage so I cut up my old Diet Coke boxes and duct-taped them to the outside of the cage. Very bag-ladyesque, but effective (and it also keeps them from losing all their toys through the rungs).

Today, they were given their first bath with both anti-fungal shampoo and Dr. Bronners Peppermint Soap. The anti-fungal shampoo is just a precaution against ringworm or other skin fungi and the Dr. Bronner's Peppermint Soap helps kill fleas (they will be given Revolution after three days [waiting three days is necessary since they were just bathed today]). The kittens were dewormed and given their first vaccine today. As you can tell, one of them didn't think too much of the whole process! They seem to have gotten over being upset quite quickly as they are currently playing with all their toys and snuggling with their stuffed animals (kittens can never have too many toys)

They are currently living in an extra large dog cage in my "cat free living room"; however, I am currently searching for foster homes for these munchkins.